Christianity and this website
Some additional quotations -- more
controversial this time:
- "Christianity is the only true religion. ... Jesus said that He was the only
way. Jesus is unique. He was either telling the truth, [or] He was crazy, or He
was a liar. But since everyone agrees that Jesus was a good man, how then could
He be both good and crazy, or good and a liar? He had to be telling the truth.
He is the only way." Matthew J. Slick, President of CARM.
- "... there are other possibilities ... perhaps Jesus was simply mistaken or
that we don’t have an accurate record of what he truly said — if, indeed, he
even existed."Austin Cline 1
- "The world is equally shocked at hearing Christianity
criticized and seeing it practiced."
Elton Trueblood, (1900 - 1994), American author and
- "Many people think that the Bible is the authentic word of God and they
worship the Bible, making it an idol..." Alan Watts, from "The
Essence of Alan Watts series - GOD.
About this site's approach:
Our policies: This section on Christianity is quite large. Its contents might not be what you expect.
There are millions of religious web
sites on the Internet. A Google search for "God" found about 541 million hits;
"Jesus" returned 212 million; "Christ" found 114 million. Almost all of
these sites promote a single viewpoint -- that of the
webmaster or of the sponsoring denomination. This web site is different.
We are a multi-faith group. Our goal is to help
religious people understand the full diversity of beliefs and practices within Christianity
today, and down through history.
This web site has a lot more material about Christianity than on any
other religion. That is because of the importance of Christianity and the
political power of organized para-church groups, particularly in the U.S. Almost 75% of American adults
as Christian. In comparison, the next largest religions are
Islam and Judaism, whose memberships total only
one or two percent of the adult U.S. population.
Our definition of "Christian:" There are probably thousands of different
definitions of the word "Christian." We have chosen the same
definition as is used by public opinion pollsters and government census offices:
"A 'Christian' includes any group or individual who seriously,
sincerely, devoutly, prayerfully
describes themselves as Christian."
Under this definition, Christianity includes: Roman Catholics, Southern Baptists,
Jehovah's Witnesses, Mormons, United Church members,
progressive Christians, even a small minority of Unitarian
We recognize that this is a very inclusive definition. We are reminded of this on a
daily basis by irate Christians who strongly feel that only a small percentage
of people who regard themselves to be Christians are actually
"true" Christians, according to the
definition that the Emailer uses.
Coverage of Christian history: We try to explain the full diversity of Christian beliefs: from those held by
very conservative to
very liberal believers. Sometimes we also include the diversity of beliefs of the very early Christian movement from the 1st and 2nd century
- Some Christians believe that the beliefs of the earliest primitive
Christian movement are closest to Jesus' actual teaching. This group, the
Jewish Christians, was centered in Jerusalem under the leadership of James
-- the brother/step brother/cousin/ friend -- of Jesus. This group was apparently
founded by Jesus' followers at about the time of his execution, circa 30 CE.
Before the return of Paul to Judea circa 38 CE, it was the only Christian
movement in the world. The group was led by individuals who had followed Jesus;
his teachings would have been fresh
in their mind.
- Other Christians believe that the beliefs of their
present-day faith group are closest to Jesus' actual teaching even though it
reflects the evolving tradition of their denomination and the many changes made since
the first century CE.
Upset at our site content? Many of our visitors are distressed
because they find material on our site which describes beliefs by
Christians from denominations other than their own. They regard these beliefs to be in gross error, unacceptable,
and either un-Christian or anti-Christian. If you are distressed by the content, please
do not write us angry Emails. Please take up your complaints with the people who hold
those beliefs. We are a group of religious reporters, not theologians. However, if you find that we have incorrectly explained the beliefs of a Christian group,
please do inform us.
Points of concern:
It is our policy to compare and contrast the beliefs and practices of very
conservative with very liberal/progressive Christians. Most North American
Christians belong to either a mainline denomination or the Roman Catholic
Church. Your faith group may teach some beliefs similar to the conservative wing
of Christianity and others similar to that of the liberal wing, and still others
that are unique to your denomination.
feel that it is important for persons of all faith groups (Christian and
non-Christian) to understand the great diversity of Christian beliefs -- both among
denominations today and throughout history. Many Christians are aware of their
own denomination's current beliefs. However, they may be unfamiliar with how
beliefs have changed through the 19 centuries of Christian history and how they
differ from other Christian faith groups.
We hope that the contents of this section will be of
interest, whether you want to:
- Carry out the Great Commission by evangelizing
- Debate with them, or
- Dialogue with them, or
- Work with them, in spite of theological difference, to jointly tackle
social problems, or
- Merely understand them.
The importance of religious tolerance:
The U.S. and Canada are the most
religiously diverse countries in the world. Both are becoming
If current trends reported by the
American Religious Identification Survey (ARIS) continue:
- The percentage of adults in both countries who identify themselves as
Christian is now in the low 70s and will continue to drop by about 0.8 percentage points per year.
- Protestant Christians will shortly become a minority in the U.S. Some commentators believe that
this has already happened -- perhaps during 2006.
- Christians will become a
minority in in Canada about 2023 and in the
U.S. about the year 2042.
With such trends likely, Americans and Canadians are going to need religious
understanding and tolerance towards each other's
faiths in the future. As we state on our home page, the term "religious
tolerance" on this website means to extend religious freedom to people of all
religious traditions, even though you may well disagree with their beliefs
Having tolerance toward another religion does not require you to endorse that
faith group's beliefs; it simply indicates your respect for its right to exist
and for its member to hold different beliefs without being oppressed.
Religious tolerance does require you to be civil towards others, but does
not require you:
- To accept all religions as equally true.
- To avoid criticizing actions motivated by religion that harm others.
- To avoid comparing beliefs of different religions with each other.
- To avoid comparing religious beliefs with with
scientific findings where they overlap.
Some books on Christianity that you can
safely order from:
Austin Cline, "Lord, Liar, or Lunatic: C.S. Lewis and the Jesus Trilemma,"
David Barrett et al, "World Christian Encyclopedia: A comparative survey of churches and religions - AD 30 to 2200,"
Oxford University Press, (2001). Read reviews or order this book safely
from Amazon.com online book store
We have been invited to exchange links with Jesus Christ Saves Ministries (JCSM).
Copyright © 1998 to 2008 by Ontario Consultants on
Last updated and reviewed: 2008-NOV-08
Author: Bruce A Robinson